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Rockets GM Daryl Morey says stars want to keep Omer Asik, Jeremy Lin

(Rocky Widner/Getty Images) Jeremy Lin and Omer Asik received endorsements from Dwight Howard and James Harden, according to GM Daryl Morey. (Rocky Widner/Getty Images)

Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey reiterated his stance that the team plans to keep high-paid 2012 starters Omer Asik and Jeremy Lin during Saturday's introductory press conference for Dwight Howard.

But this time, Morey said that he was not the only one who has made the case to keep the two.

“The reality is James (Harden) and Dwight (Howard) want to play with Jeremy and Omer,” Morey said, according to The Houston Chronicle's Jonathan Feigen. “I’ve been kicked down to assistant GM. They’re going to be here.”

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Both players signed three-year, $25-million deals as restricted free agents last offseason. Asik started all 82 games during the season, averaging 10.1 points and 11.7 rebounds, while Lin averaged 13.4 points and 6.1 assists before suffering injuries and being replaced by Patrick Beverly during the playoffs.

Morey particularly praised the 27-year-old Asik, who served as Joakim Noah's backup for the Bulls during his first two seasons, during Saturday's press conference.

From The Chronicle:

“When we didn’t have Omer out there last year, we sucked,” Morey said. “I mean, we were terrible. That was where we lost games. When we had Omer out there, we were a top 10 defensive team. Now we have a defensive player of the year and Omer. I mean that position is so important if you’re going to have a solid defense. Now we have two of the best in the league. I’m very excited.”

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